Dentaltown June 2021 - 61

evaluation of the future restorative plan
relative to existing anatomy. If the patient
is a candidate for implant, the clinician may
prescribe additional grafting or creation of a
surgical guide. On visit four, the patient is
scheduled for implant placement. Visit fi ve
is traditionally a postoperative visit to ensure
proper healing. Another appointment, visit
six, may need to be scheduled to address
soft-tissue contouring or even uncovering the
implant. At visit seven, the dentist obtains
the fi nal impression for the laboratory to
create the abutment implant crown. Finally,
on visit eight, the fi nal implant prosthetic
is seated.
On occasion, additional appointments
may be required if the shade and contour
from the previous visit were not appropriate.
Keep in mind, extra time must also be built
in for lab delays and additional cosmetic
refi nements if necessary. All of these factors
can affect the patient because of time off from
work and travel to and from appointments.
Digital dentistry: At visit one, we are
able to acquire digital intraoral scans of both
hard and soft tissues using Primescan and
merge that data with the Axeos CBCT image
to design and place a virtual, custom-fi t 3D
prosthetic. The software allows us to provide
patients with a visual representation of the
implant and the procedure itself. From this
data at the initial consultation, the dentist
and laboratory are able to create a surgical
guide and even potentially an immediate
implant provisional, using CAD/CAM with
either milling or printing technology. This
removes all the analog methods of impressions
and stone models, along with manual labor
for fabrication of said surgical guide and
provisional. On visit two, the clinician is
able to place the implant fully guided with
immediate prosthesis or even custom healing
abutment. Because of this minimally invasive
procedure, additional follow-up visits may not
be required. On visit three, we can provide the
fi nal implant restoration in a single visit with
chairside CAD/CAM prosthetics, which are
fully customized and aesthetically matched
to the patient's smile.
For most of my patients, the CBCT
image is the starting point and the backbone
of care. The 3D image allows us to accurately
diagnose a patient's dental problem and
build an effective solution. In addition,
with the baseline data we acquire from the
scan, we can conduct pretty much any facet
of dentistry.
Empowering patients
and building trust
We dentists expect our patients to trust
what we stand for and what we have to offer.
3D diagnostic images help us build this trust
because they help patients understand why
they need a given procedure. Visual data
and education help foster a mindset shift
that increases case acceptance and patient
satisfaction. A recent study has shown that
Scan here to hear more from the
author about dental technology
During Townie Meeting 2015, Dr. Neal Patel not only presented as a
speaker but also sat down with Dentaltown founder Dr. Howard Farran
for a podcast about using technology in the dental practice. Their
hourlong conversation includes topics such as the different types of
CT machines, how Patel set pricing for scans in his practice, and the
importance of integrating your technology. To stream the podcast,
scan the code at left with the camera of your mobile device.
Take a CE series on CBCT interpretation
Dr. Tony Mecham's two-course CE series " Intro to CBCT Interpretation " explains
important concepts and illustrates common fi ndings and anatomical variations in sites
like the oral cavity, the nasal fossa, and the skull and neck. To take the courses for a
chance to earn 3.5 CE credits, go to dentaltown.com/mecham-ce.
dental patients are embracing the new era
of advanced digital technology and visual
communications.2
My practice prides itself on being a
front-runner in the latest technology and
equipment. With CBCT as our " workhorse, "
we are able to deliver highly personalized
treatment with reduced chair time, fewer
visits and more predictable outcomes-
making for a better patient experience. When
patients are more involved and engaged with
their care, they are more likely to agree to
our recommendations and interventions.
Looking to the future
Ultimately, dental professionals defi ne
our practices by the experience our patients
receive. Contemporary digital dentistry gives
us an opportunity to elevate our treatment
modalities and results in the best dental
care for our patients. Patients are more
confi dent in our ability to manage their
long-term oral health care, boosting the
potential for long-term relationships and
increased referrals. From a practice effi ciency
perspective, workfl ows can be streamlined
and new service offerings can be uncovered,
maximizing the potential of our practices.
To clinicians who may still be hesitant
to dive in: Now is the time to push forward!
Of course, with anything new, there is a
learning curve to adapt to the technology.
The key to success and productivity is
adequate training and education for all of
those involved in using the equipment. As
you gain experience with today's innovative
digital tools, you'll be better prepared for
the next generation of digital dentistry
technology. It will be a win for the practice
from a business and clinical perspective,
a win for office staff members who are
working in a more modern, progressive
atmosphere and, most importantly, a win
for your patients. ■
References:
1. Gedrimiene A, Adaskevicius R, Rutkunas V. Accuracy of
digital and conventional dental implant impressions for
fi xed partial dentures: a comparative clinical study. J Adv
Prosthodont. 2019;11:271-279.
2. Saponaro PC, Yilmaz B, Johnston W, et al. Evaluation of patient
experience and satisfaction with CAD-CAM-fabricated
complete dentures: a retrospective survey study. J Prosthet
Dent. 2016;116:524-528.
dentaltown.com \\ JUNE 2021 61
http://www.dentaltown.com/mecham-ce http://www.dentaltown.com

Dentaltown June 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Dentaltown June 2021

Dentaltown June 2021 - Intro
Dentaltown June 2021 - Cover1
Dentaltown June 2021 - Cover2
Dentaltown June 2021 - 1
Dentaltown June 2021 - 2
Dentaltown June 2021 - 3
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Dentaltown June 2021 - Cover3
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